Professional Search Engine Optimization with PHP:
A Developer's Guide to SEO

by Jaimie Sirovich and Cristian Darie, Wrox, April 2007

Review/buy: Amazon  ·  Amazon.ca  ·  Amazon.co.uk  ·  B&N  ·  Bookpool
Demo online: Not Available
Detailed table of contents: (see below)
Free chapter: Chapter 1: You: Programmer and Search Engine Marketer
Code download: Available Here
Errata: (Maintained by SEO Egghead)
Book link at publisher's website: Wrox
Keywords: seo php book, URL rewriting, mod_rewrite, regular expressions, duplicate content, web syndication, social bookmarking, IP cloaking, geo-targeting, IP delivery, black hat SEO, WordPress SEO optimization

Traditionally, search engine marketers and web developers worked independently. However, these days it is difficult to have either one of them operate in a vacuum. With this book, we place search engine optimization in a brand new light, evangelizing that SEO should be done by the PHP programmer as well. (Note: the SEO ASP.NET edition of this book will also be available soon.)

The SEO Book For PHP Developers

This unique PHP/SEO book will teach you that if you architect the site properly, PHP can help you make friends with Google, Yahoo!, and MSN. Assuming a bit of PHP experience, the book will teach you the skills you need to create and maintain a search engine friendly web site, and avoid common pitfalls that confuse search engine spiders. The book discusses in depth how to to facilitate site spidering, and analyzes the various technologies and services that can be leveraged for site promotion.

This is a programming book, and it contains many step-by-step coding exercises. Some of the topics covered include the following:

- Understanding the criteria that influence search engine rankings
- Building keyword-rich URLs using PHP, Apache, and mod_rewrite
- Using the HTTP headers to properly indicate the status of web documents
- Relocating content using the proper HTTP status codes
- Coping with duplicate content effectively to avoid penalization
- Avoiding being the victim of black hat SEO techniques
- Implementing geo-targeting and cloaking using IP delivery
- Promoting your site using web feeds and social bookmarking
- Optimizing your web pages using better HTML and JavaScript
- Enhancing existing web sites
- Using search engine and traditional site maps effectively
- SEO for WordPress blogs
- Building a SE-optimized E-Commerce catalog case-study

SEO PHP Book Translations

Who Is This Book For?

This book is primarily aimed at PHP developers who want to improve their SEO skills, and use PHP at its full potential for meeting their SEO targets. The book may also be helpful for more technically-sound search engine marketers who have the patience to install Apache, PHP, MySQL, and follow the step-by-step exercises in the book. If you're not a technical person, you may find this book to be very *dense*.

Ideally, this shouldn't be your first book on SEO, and certainly not your first book on PHP. Here are some books that can help you build the foundations.

Table Of Contents

01. You: Programmer and Search Engine Marketer introduces you into the world of this SEO book, and guides you through installing Apache, PHP, and MySQL.

02. A Primer in Basic SEO is a brief introduction to the fundamentals of SEO, and a handy reference of the basic factors that contribute to site ranking. You also learn about search engine penalties, web analytics and research tools, browser plugins, community forums, and search engine blogs and resources that can help you along the way.

03. Provocative SE-Friendly URLs takes you through many exercises where you'll learn how to implement search engine friendly URLs using mod_rewrite, PHP, and regular expressions. You'll also learn how to create a "link factory" module, which helps generating consistent keyword-rich dynamic URLs in your web site.

04. Content Relocation and HTTP Status Codes teaches you how to properly use mod_rewrite and PHP to redirect content without losing rankings or web site functionality. By the end of the chapter, you'll know what numbers such as 301, 302, 404 and 500 mean, and how they can help your web site perform better with humans and search engines alike. You'll even learn how to implement automatic URL correction, to minimize your URL maintenance efforts.

05. Duplicate Content analyzes the problem of duplicate content and shows a few ways of avoiding it. You'll learn how to design your site to minimize potential duplicate content problems, and how to work with robots.txt and with the robots meta tag. You'll implement code that generates the dynamic portions of robots.txt for you, and that automates the management and redirection of affiliate links.

06. SE-Friendly HTML and JavaScript deals with on-page optimization using better HTML and JavaScript. After learning the basics, you'll be taken through step-by-step exercises to build search-engine friendly popup windows, crawable images using sIFR and Stewart Rosenberger's text replacement library, and a custom markup language parser. AJAX and Flash effects on SEO are also discussed.

07. Web Feeds and Social Bookmarking teaches you the basics of RSS and Atom, and how to create a library that generates RSS feeds based on your web content. Then you'll learn how to use the SimplePie library to read web feeds, and how to automatically generate social bookmarking icons for your pages or feeds.

08. Black Hat SEO investigates black hat seo techniques, and teaches you how to avoid being their victim. You'll learn how to avoid HTML insertion attacks, how to automatically sanitize user input, and automatically add the nofollow attribute to untrusted links. Finally, you'll learn how to implement a simple CAPTCHA library.

09. Sitemaps discusses the details of Google and Yahoo sitemaps, and teaches you how to implement automatic sitemap generation.

10. Link Bait is a short and sweet chapter on hooking links, and shows a simple example PHP application that you could use for that purpose.

11. IP Cloaking, Geotargeting, and IP delivery discusses the pros and cons of these techniques, and teaches you how to implement them using your own PHP code.

12. Foreign Language SEO deals with the difficulties you typically encounter when building sites in other languages than English.

13. Coping with Technical Issues handles various technical problems that can affect your SEO efforts when building or maintaining your web site. You implement a link checker library that helps you detect broken links in your web site.

14. Case Study: Building an E-Commerce Catalog is exactly what its title reads. You implement many of the techniques you've learned throughout the book to implement a simple, but search-engine friendly product catalog.

15. Site Clinic: So You Have a Web Site? offers practical advice for enhancing existing websites for better SEO performance.

16. WordPress: Creating a SE-Friendly Blog is about - yes, you guessed it! - creating and improving a SE-optimized WordPress blog. You learn how to install WordPress, turn on permalinks, use Askimet to prevent comment spam, use Sociable to add social bookmarking icons, use WP-Email to add "email a friend" links, create chicklets using the Chicklet creator plugin, add sitemaps using the Sitemap generator plugin, and add Google sitemaps using the Google sitemaps plugin. In the end, you learn how to create your own Digg Button and Pagerfix plugins. Note: updates for this chapter are avaiable at SEOEgghead.com.

A. Regular Expressions Tutorial teaches the basics of regulars expressions, to complement the regex theory presented in Chapter 3.

B. Glossary of Terms is a short reference for a few of the SEO-related and technical terms presented in the book.

Yep, my new SEO PHP book is *that* exciting! I will upload more details as soon as they will be available. My co-author, Jaimie Sirovich, has a very useful SEO blog at http://www.seoegghead.com. I suggest you have a look, the blog is very interesting and is getting constantly favorable reviews.